It's not all Doughnuts and BBQ

Workplace morale isn’t always about pets in the office, casual Friday or doughnuts on Monday mornings; honest communication and letting your employees know where they are headed within the company are just as important.
Ask any employee or employer what boosts employee morale, and they can usually provide a range of suggestions. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to creating an environment that promotes job satisfaction. And with more tech-savvy people entering the workplace, there will be an increased need for an individualized and tailored approach.
Making sure that your employees are excited about your company and its goals is one of the keys to your success. Although there are no magic tricks or quick fixes, there are a few tried and true techniques to building and maintaining workplace morale.

The number one cause of employee morale problems is … you guessed it… some kind of leadership problem. Since most employees know that criticizing the boss does not put them on the road to promotion, managers should start with a look in the mirror and ask for feedback from employees.

Many business owners think boosting employee morale is as easy as offering giveaways, bonuses and salary increases. These ideas are good for the short term but don’t acknowledge the basic truth of improved morale, building and sustaining a satisfying and rewarding work experience. Things like BBQ’s, flowers and doughnuts may help for a day or two, but can’t sustain morale and no salary figure can compensate for low morale. These ideas should be viewed as a natural result of a satisfying work experience. In other words, we’re at a BBQ because we want to be, not because we have to be.

For many small businesses, one of the most powerful elements in achieving success is teamwork. Successful teams can challenge and motivate employees to learn, grow, and invest in the success of your company. They also make for happier employees and bolster retention rates. When you lose that sense of teamwork, the workplace can become a swamp of egos, negativity, sluggish performance and disgruntled employees.

In addition to understanding the company, employees also need to understand the employers’ expectations in order to be productive. In other words, establish a mutual understanding of responsibilities and priorities with each employee beginning with a job description. An employee who knows exactly what is expected will perform more productively.

Your employees will spend nearly one-third of their life at work, so creating a work environment addresses to the needs of employees is critical. In most cases, the result will be happier employees that willingly contribute to your successful company.